Benson crushes car into coffee table. No. 10 Valvoline Pontiac driver Johnny Benson loved his superspeedway car ...
Benson crushes car into coffee table. No. 10 Valvoline Pontiac driver Johnny Benson loved his superspeedway car #4518.
It was the white car he used to lead 38 laps and nearly win the 2000 Daytona 500.
It was a car that ran well at most superspeedway races after that. But it was also the car he was racing in the top 10 at the Pepsi 400 in Daytona last year when he was wrecked on lap 8.
Benson suffered three broken ribs on his right side in that wreck and missed the Chicago and New Hampshire races.
The team retired the car, but Benson didn't want to let go of his favorite superspeedway car.
So what do you do when you are a race car driver who has a car you really likes but it's too damaged to race again?
It's easy. You make it into a coffee table for your race shop.
Last month, Benson took the damaged Valvoline Pontiac up to a salvage yard in Statesville, N.C. and crushed the car into a cube.
Now he's going to make it in a table to put it in his race shop.
"Hey, it was a great car," said Benson. "I didn't want to get rid of it so we put it to some good use. It's going to be the #10 Valvoline coffee table now instead of a Pontiac."
Benson is putting the finishing touches on the table and expects to be complete in a few months.
"It will look good when I get done. I guess you would call it a really heavy cube right now. It was just something to do for an afternoon."
Benson races again on July 5 in Daytona. Obviously, with a new car.
"Hopefully, this time we will get a trophy we can put on the table," he said. "I don't plan on making another table out of a race car ever again."
Benson Daytona Quotes
Is There A Difference Between This Race and February Race?
"First off there are 100 less miles and it's at night. But that is about it. There used to be a big difference between this race and the Daytona 500. There' s not as big of a difference now because this is a night race. When we ran this in the daytime it was so hot and slippery that downforce mattered a heck of a lot more. The track still gets slippery. But because it is at night it's a little bit more consistent. Handling is still more important at this race but its not like it used to be. The night races on superspeedways have been great. As drivers we don't have to worry about the track changing as much like if the sun is out or not as we did during the daytime races. The track stays consistent and they have done a great job of lighting the track. Plus it gets us home for a day on Sunday."
Are There Drafting Partners?
"The only partners you really have are the guy in front of you and the guy behind you and that changes throughout the race. I don't care what anyone promises you before the race or on the team radios during the race. If they think they can help themselves they are going to forget about any agreement just as fast as they can."